Hazard, H. W. (ed.) / Volume III: The fourteenth and fifteenth centuries
VII: The Catalans and Florentines in Greece, 1380-1462, pp. 225-277 PDF (23.4 MB)
Ch. VII THE CATALANS AND FLORENTINES IN GREECE, 1380—1462 231 text, hidden for five centuries in an Aragonese archival register, is probably the first aesthetic description of the Acropolis after a millennium of silence in western sources. As John Boyl and Rodonella conveyed the "Articles of Athens" to the king at Lerida (and swore fealty for the municipality), so Bernard Ballester presented the petitions of Louis Fadrique, as well as those of the worried citizens of Livadia and the refugees from Thebes, to whom Louis was still giving shelter in the fastness of Salona. 10 King Peter IV knew Ballester well, for he had come to Barcelona a year before, as we have seen, bringing the first official news of the Navarrese capture of Thebes, and had then served as the royal envoy to the duchies upon his return to Greece.11 He must have received a cordial welcome, not merely because he had come to swear fealty for his principals, but because he had first organized baronial support for Peter's acquisition of the duchies. Ballester now received no niggard ly reward "for the service which he had done us in securing for us the cession of the duchies of Athens and Neopatras," because on Sep tember 25 (1380) the king granted him 4,000 gold florins of Aragon from the revenues of the royal third of the tithe of the city of Jativa and its territory, to be paid in annual instalments of 4,000 solidi until Ballester had received the full amount.12 On April 28, 1381, the king reaffirmed the appointment of Philip Dalmau, viscount of Rocaberti, as his vicar, viceroy, and lieutenant in castell sia la pus richa joya qui a! mont [i.e., món] sia, e tal que entre tots los reys de cristians envides lo porien fer semblant." Cf. Gregorovius (trans. Lampros), History of the City of Athens [in Greek], II (1904), 194—195; Rubió i Liuch, "Significació de l'elogi de l'Acrôpolis d'Atenes pel Rei Pere'l Ceremoniós," in the Homenaje ofrecido a [D. Ramon] Menéndez Pidal (Madrid, 1925), III, 37—56, and Los Catalanes en Grecia (Madrid, 1927), pp. 131—137; Setton, Catalan Domination, pp. 187—188. On the dispatch of the twelve archers from Catalonia to Athens, see Dipl., doc. CDXXVII, p. 505, dated September 29, and docs. CDXXVIII - CDXXXI, CDXXXV, pp. 505—507, 509, dated October 5, 6, and 11, 1380. 10. Dipl., doc. CCCXCII, p. 481. 11. Cf. Dipl., docs. CCCLXXV, CCCLXXVI, CCCLXXXI—CCCLXXXIII, CCCLXXXV, CCCLXXXVI, pp. 457 ff., dated September, October, and November 1379. Ballester had doubtless returned to Catalonia on the same ship as John Boy! and Rodonella, arriving in Lerida on August 1, 1380. 12. Dipl., doc. CDXLI, p. 513, dated February 14, 1381: ". . . e aquesta gracia li havem feta per lo servey que'ns ha fet en fernos donar los ducats de Athenes e de la Patria." Peter IV made the grant of money to Ballester on September 25, 1380, the dated text being given in the infante Don John's confirmation of July 10, 1381 (Dipl., doc. DII, pp. 555—556, "datum Ilerde XXV. die Septembris anno . . . MCCCLXXX," misdated September 28 by Rubió i Lluch, loc. cit., and by Loenertz, Arch. FF. Praed., XXV, no. 185, P. 147). The king is also explicit in this latter document as to Ballester's service to the Aragonese crown, "ad grata et obsequiosa servitia per vos . . Bernardum Ballistarii nobis prestita signanter ut ducatus Attenarum Neopatrie ad nostrum dominium pervenirent" (Dipl., p. 555). Note also Dipl., docs. CDX , CDLXXXV, CDXCI, pp. 500, 545, 549.
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